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Planina Dolga Njiva and Košutnikov Turn Day Hike, Karawanks, Slovenia

Košutnikov Turn (Koschutnikturm) is the highest summit along the Košuta ridge in the Karawanks mountain range in the Slovenian Alps.

The 10-km-long Košuta ridge is the longest mountain in Slovenia and forms part of the natural border between Austria and Slovenia. 

While it’s possible to ascend to Košutnikov Turn from both countries, it’s far more accessible from the Slovenian side.  

From the north (Austria), you can reach the peak via a Klettersteig (via ferrata) trail. From the south (Slovenia), you can hike to the summit along a regular hiking trail. 

We hiked to Košutnikov Turn from the Slovenian side, starting at Planina Dolga Njiva, a mountain dairy on the slopes of the Košuta ridge. 

This post outlines our loop trail and everything you need to know about how to get to the trailhead, where to eat, and where to stay.

If you want to explore the Karawanks on a longer, multi-day route, check out this Trekking the Karawanks self-guided hike by Slotrips.

Dolga Njiva, Alpine Dairy Farm, Slovenia Travel Guide - Best Things to Do
  • Mountain Range: Karawanks (also spelled Karavankas and Karavanks)
  • Trailhead: Parking area below Planina Dolga Njiva (35 min drive from Tržič) | Google Maps
  • Distance: 7.5 km lollipop circuit
  • Time Needed: 4:30 hours 
  • Elevation Gain/Loss: 944 meters
  • Difficulty: Moderately Difficult 
  • Minimum Elevation: 1276 meters
  • Maximum Elevation: 2133 meters
  • When to Hike: Mid-June – Mid-September, when Planina Dolga Njiva is open. 
  • Where to Stay in Tržič: Apartma Jelendol (budget), or Glamping Mountain Fairy Tale (luxuy)
  • Where to Stay in Bled: Hotel Starkl (midrange), or Vila Bled (luxury)

Košutnikov Turn Hiking Map


How to Get to the Košutnikov Turn Trailhead

 Košutnikov Turn Day Hike in the Karawanks (Karavanke) Mountains, Slovenia

Drive to the town of Tržič in Northern Slovenia. From Tržič, you’ll drive through the Dovžan Gorge to Jelendol village, following the Tržič Bistrica river. 

After driving through Jelendol, the road divides. Stay to the right and continue on the unpaved road for another 9 km. 

When you reach the first intersection, turn left in the direction of “Planina Dolga Njiva.” At the second crossroads, make a right, again following signs towards “Dolga Njiva” and “Planšarija.”

The designated parking lot is marked with a large blue “P” sign. There’s no parking fee.

The drive from Tržič to the trailhead takes 35-40 minutes. 


Košutnikov Turn Route Description


Hike to Planina Dolga Njiva (20 minutes)

From the parking area, there’s a red-painted waymark and an arrow pointing you in the direction of “Kosut. Turn”.

Follow the direction of the arrow, taking the upper track. Soon you’ll see an almost hidden wooden sign indicating 20 minutes to Dolga Njiva and 2 hours to Košutnikov Turn. 

As you ascend, the footpath is at first very obvious. After crossing a wooden platform bridge, the trail seems to diverge in a few directions.

Maintain the same direction, staying on the “Pastirska pot” trail and you’ll soon enter Planina Dolga Njiva. 


Planina Dolga Njiva to Košuta ridge (1:15 hours)

Dolga Njiva to Košutnikov Turn Hike, Karawanks, Slovenia Trail Sign

When you enter the pasture area, the beautiful Košuta ridge towers above the sloping pasture.

Before reaching the Dolga Njiva pasture hut, there’s a signed intersection. To start the hike to Košutnikov Turn, turn left (signed 1 hr 30 min). 

Soon, you’ll cross a pasture fence and then hike through the forest. A few minutes later, you’ll make a sharp right, when you see the red trail sign to Košutnikov Turn.

This part of the trail is defined by tight, steep hairpins. You’ll ascend quickly through the forest and then up a grassy slope.

When you emerge above the timberline, you’ll continue to hike up and across a steep mountain slope. This is treacherous after rainfall, or in rain. 

Hiking to Košuta ridge, Karawanks, Slovenia

The views get increasingly more exciting.

At first, you’ll see the ever-present Storžic, the highest mountain in the western part of the Kamnik–Savinja Alps. Later on, more of the Kamnik range is visible.

View of Košutnikov Turn from the Ridge, Karawanks, Slovenian Alps

Ultimately the trail levels out for a while, bringing you below Košutnikov Turn.

This easy stretch ends abruptly, when the trail steers left, ascending steeply to the ridge.

Read Next: Best Hikes in Slovenia


Košuta ridge to Košutnikov Turn (15 minutes)

Hike to Košutnikov Turn (Koschutnikturm), Karavanke Mountains, Slovenia
Hike to Košutnikov Turn (Koschutnikturm), Karavanke Mountains, Slovenian Alps
Košutnikov Turn (Koschutnikturm) Summit, Karavanke Mountains, Slovenia

From the ridge, the dizzying views towards Austria are impressive, if not spine-tingling.

A sign indicates 15 minutes to Košutnikov Turn. This final stretch to the summit requires a bit of scrambling and caution. 


Košutnikov Turn to Planina Dolga Njiva (1:45 minutes)

Košutnikov Turn / Koschutnikturm Hike, Karawanken, Slovenia

The loop trail continues from the summit south-east. Initially, it’s very steep and you need to concentrate on each step you take. 

After descending 190 meters, the trail continues left, crossing through the rocky towers above the planina. Keep your eyes out for chamois. 

Though the trail isn’t difficult, it’s very narrow at times, running above precipices in some places. 

Košutnikov Turn / Koschutnikturm Hike, Karawanken, Slovenia

The descent becomes increasingly easier with time. You’ll hike through dwarf pine and ultimately emerge at the upper part of the Dolga Njiva pasture.

When you get to the meadow, head right, following the dirt road to the Dolga Njiva dairy farm (20 min). 


Eat Lunch at Planina Dolga Njiva

Dolga Njiva to Košutnikov Turn Hike, Karawanks, Slovenia

Dolga Njiva is a very special place. In summer, the pasture hut is surrounded by enclosures of pigs, bunnies, turkeys, chickens, donkeys, sheep, and cows.

You can eat a traditional Slovenian lunch here. 

Dolga Njiva Lunch, Karawanks, Slovenia

Because there wasn’t a menu and our comprehension was limited, we simply ordered one of everything. We ate:

Štruklji – traditional dough roll filled with a cottage cheese filling. Sugar and cinnamon on the side.

Ajdovi Žganci – buckwheat spoon bread, or buckwheat porridge, served with pork cracklings. 

Kranjska klobasa & Kislo Zelje – Carniolan sausage served with Sauerkraut 

Kislo Mleko – Sour Milk


Where to Stay


Lake Bled

Best Places to Stay in Bled

Budget | Guesthouse Marko is a top-rated guesthouse in Bled, walking distance to the lakeshore.

Midrange | Old Parish House is a cozy and clean bed and breakfast, 100 meters away from Lake Bled.

Midrange | Hotel Starkl – Heritage & Unique is a darling lakefront hotel with an on-site restaurant and bar. Breakfast is included. This family-run property stands out with its friendly service, exceptional cuisine, and location.

Luxury | Vila Bled is a historic lakefront hotel with 33 rooms. Set in a quiet area of Lake Bled, guests can enjoy the historical flair of President Tito’s former summer residence. Breakfast is included.

Luxury | Bled Rose Hotel is a modern, 4-star hotel in the center of Bled. The hotel features an on-site bar, an indoor swimming pool and spa, a fitness room, and private beach area. Breakfast is included in the room rate.

More Bled accommodations | Old Bled House (midrange guesthouse), JAZZ B&B (midrange) Vila Alpina (midrange guesthouse), Hotel Lovec (luxury hotel), Adora Luxury Hotel (lakefront boutique luxury), and Grand Hotel Toplice (lakefront luxury hotel)

Look for accommodation in Bled.


Tržič

The best place to stay for exploring the Košuta ridge and the Karawanks is the village of Tržič.

Glamping | Glamping Mountain Fairy Tale are air-conditioned glamping cabins in Bistrica pri Tržiču. Each unit features kitchenettes and private bathrooms. Hot tubs are available at an extra charge with prior notice. Breakfast is included. And, you can rent bikes on-site.

Look for accommodation in Tržič.


More Hikes in the Karawanks



Slovenia Trip Planning Essentials

Use our Slovenia Travel Guide to plan an unforgettable trip.


When to Visit Slovenia

Summer and Fall Seasons. The best time to travel to Slovenia is between May and October.

The best time to hike in the Slovenian Alps is between June and October. For hut-to-hut hiking, we recommend planning your trek between early July and mid-September.

Winter Season. For skiing and winter activities, the best time to visit Slovenia is between mid/late December and March.



Where to Stay

We’ve summarized our favorite destinations and accommodations in Best Paces to Stay in Slovenia, including Lake Bled, Lake Bohinj, Logar Valley, Kranjka Gora, and Kobarid.


How to Explore Slovenia

Small Group Guided Hiking Tours

If you’re a solo traveler, or friend group who would love to explore Slovenia’s hiking trails with a knowledgeable and licensed mountain guide, consider booking one of these small group hiking tours.

All of these tours are designed by Slotrips, a trustworthy local tour operator that crafts meaningful and memorable itineraries. 

Best Walks in Slovenia is an 8-day hiking tour (day hikes only) with fixed and guaranteed departure dates between late May and late September. 

Discover the Slovenian Alps  is an 8-day hiking tour, which combines a 3-day hut-to-hut hike in Triglav National Park with moderate day hikes. 

Best of the Julian Alps Hut-to-Hut is a 3-day hut-to-hut hike in the heart of the Julian Alps. This guided tour departs every Monday from July to September. Hikers have the option to add on Mount Triglav summit with an IFMGA licensed mountain guide.

Self-Guided Hiking, Biking, and Rafting Tours

If you love hiking independently, but want a professional to handle the logistics of bookings, transfers, and luggage storage (when applicable), then we recommend booking a self-guided trip like Mountains and Lakes Hut-to-Hut, or Crossing the Julian Alps.

During shoulder-season (May and October), you can hike, bike, and raft along the 4-day Alpe Adria Trail Adventure, 9-day Mountains to Sea route, or 8-day Best of Alpe-Adria and Juliana Trail.

Road Trip

Though public transit is very good in Slovenia, some destinations like Logar Valley are not accessible with transit. 

If you want to explore more off-the-beaten-path and remote areas of Slovenia, we recommend renting a car. 

Check out our itineraries for road trip inspiration:

Use the intuitive Discovercars.com car rental reservation platform to search for and book car rentals. This easy-to-use booking platform compares car rental deals from 500+ trusted providers, so that you can choose the best option for your trip.

Tip: If you can only drive automatic transmission cars, as opposed to manual transmission cars (stick shift), book your car rental as early as possible.

Check car rental rates here


Top Things to Do


Slovenia Guidebooks


Slovenia Hiking Guides

Slovenia is heaven on earth for hikers. We recommend allocating sufficient time to discover both the Julian Alps and the Kamnik Savinja Alps.

In Best Hikes in Slovenia, we’ve summarized the most thrilling day hikes and multi-day hikes across the Slovenian Alps, ranked by difficulty.

If you’re interested in hut-to-hut hiking, read our guide to Slovenian Mountain Huts and Hut-to-Hut Hiking in Slovenia.


Planina Dolga Njiva and Košutnikov Turn Day Hike, Karawanks, Slovenia

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Moon & Honey Travel is an independent blog created by two passionate hikers. We are able to provide free content to you, because of ads and affiliate links. When you make a purchase using one of these links, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Happy travels and happy trails,

Sabrina & Kati

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